Should I Switch up My Workouts?
By Rachel Carver
Humans are creatures of habit. We enjoy routines, even when it comes to our workouts. Maybe you stick with the treadmill because it is relaxing and burns calories. Or maybe you love the fresh air and have a favorite walking route.
Mixing up your workouts could be beneficial. But is walking the trail, the treadmill, or your neighborhood sidewalk better? Read on for some explanations.
Differences Between Trail, Treadmill, and Pavement Workouts
The treadmill is the easiest surface for most people to walk on. Trails are usually the hardest, and the road falls in the middle.
The treadmill gives you a more controlled environment. However, it is possible to burn more calories on a trail or road because of hills and uneven surfaces. If you are used to running the sidewalk and switch to a treadmill, perceived exertion can make this workout seem daunting.
Each of these surfaces can give you an effective workout. Here are some pros and cons about each one.
Treadmills are great for beginners. A treadmill can come in handy in extreme hot or cold weather. Treadmill workouts can also decrease your risk of injuries such as shin splints. A treadmill's softer surface is kinder to your joints than hard concrete.
To keep boredom away, create a workout play list or find an audio book that will keep you engaged. Remember you can still get injured on a treadmill.
Road workouts give you plenty of fresh air. You can join a walking or running club to stay accountable and increase your pace.
The weather can dictate your schedule, but walking or running in some conditions such as rain can increase your endurance. Road workouts also require little to no investment and keep things interesting with multiple views and routes.
Hitting the trails can be challenging. Uneven terrain creates trip hazards. However, running or walking in nature can improve your mental well-being, work more muscles, and strengthen your core. Additional strength helps with other exercises and makes tasks such as shoveling snow easier.
The Bottom Line
Running and walking are great exercises to keep you moving and energized. Try to switch up your workouts. A combination of treadmill, road, and trail workouts can lessen the effects of repeated stressors on your body. And, even though we love our routines, a different exercise just might give you the mental boost you need to stay motivated.
To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Cincinnati, Ohio.